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What is Dysregulation and What Does it Mean?



What is regulation and what does dysregulation look like? These are important things to know and understand, because with this information we can help ourselves and our children become more regulated.


The most frequent mistake I see is that we may not intervene and support a child until they are emotionally flooded. This might mean that it takes much longer to help a child regulate because their brain and body have been flooded with chemicals and hormones that may make it more challenging to regulate. What if we supported them before they were flooded? Do you know what a hyperalert state looks like?


For example, if you see a child that is moving excessively or rocking/swaying perhaps encourage them to move a bit more at that time instead of “sit still”. Or even better, direct them to your regulation station and have them work to regulate their own body and recognize the signs that they need support. If you see a child sitting alone and away from others, go sit with them and help them to regulate as well.


Dysregulation is a spectrum and is much more than a simple meltdown or tantrum. Be a detective and look for clues along the way so regulation can become more a part of what you do each and every day.

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